Leafly is the first ever cannabis company to sponsor SXSW, and as we gear up for this year’s festival, we decided to take a look at one of the most crucial pieces of any successful brand: influencer marketing. With cannabis restricted by the federal government, many standard marketing platforms are off-limits. Because traditional marketing efforts off the table, cannabis brands have to be incredibly creative to ensure their campaigns are successful.
We spoke with Dominick Damico, the founder of Adspire, the fastest growing influencer marketing agency dedicated to cannabis, to see how cannabis businesses can make the most of their brand by using outside influencers to boost their audience and maximize their marketing impact.
Leafly: What is influencer marketing?
Dominick Damico: Influencer marketing is the usage of people and platforms to drive a brand’s message to a target market. The influencer can be a person, a website, or a social media page. Essentially, any person or platform that has influence over an audience can be considered an influencer.
What are some examples of different types of influencers?
- Niched: These influencers are typically devoted to a specific market or subject (ex. Cannabis / beauty / sports / etc.)
- Celebrity: These influencers are traditional celebrity types (artists, athletes, entertainers)
- Social: These influencers found their fame through social media platforms
- Micro: These influencers have a small amount of influence, but they can be useful when brands are looking to activate many niches at once
- Localized: These influencers and their content are typically localized (ex. “Seattle Stoners”)
Influencers can fall under more than one of the categories above. For example, there are localized-micro influencers, and there are social-niched influencers.
What are some of the challenges of achieving impact through influencer marketing?
One challenge brands face is misunderstanding how to properly evaluate and vet an influencer.
In many cases, brands will go after the largest influencers they can find and this may not always be the best decision. While fan count should be taken into consideration during evaluation, brands should use engagement rate as the leading statistic for vetting an influencer.
For example, if a page with 100,000 followers receives around 5,000 engagements per post, their average engagement rate would be 5 percent. A page with 200,000 followers that receives 7,500 engagements per post would have an engagement rate of 3.75 percent. Even though the 200k page is double the size, it’s only gets 1.5 times the amount of engagement. This means if the price of the 200k page exceeds 1.5x the price of the 100k page, then the smaller page would be the better deal.
Influencer Marketing Tips and entire article by Leaflyassociate editor at Leafly, specializing in legislative cannabis policy and industry topics.
Marijuana Marketing for Businesses
Marijuana Marketing for Businesses is limited to four entrepreneurs. It is an intense one day workshop that provides you with a personalized marketing plan and strategy, the tools to initiate and maintain it, and marketing resources. The workshop is a cost-effective solution to launching a successful marketing campaign. Marijuana Marketing for Businesses is an investment in the success and growth of your company.
For more information visit The Women’s Cannabis Chamber of Commerce